THE LEGAL CHARACTER OF PETROLEUM LICENCES
AbstractThe Federal government has the power to grant licences, permits and leases to deal with petroleum resources, and to derogate legislatively from them, constrained only by certain contractual manner and form requirements. Against this backdrop, the article examines the Alberta mechanism that has successfully avoided interference with vested and acquired rights, new Newfoundland regulations dealing with the early stages of exploration of petroleum potential, and federal regulatory amendments intended to reassert the federal ability to derogate from granted rights. The author argues that although legally permissible, political pressure will keep federal power to derogate in check and force compliance with greater societal values. The significance of the legal instruments must be seen within this political context.
Keywords:Licence, Natural Resources
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